LOCAL papers are at the heart of their community which is why the Bridport News is pleased to announce that we're once again offering cash for good causes in that community.

The Gannett Foundation, the charitable fund run by the publisher of the Bridport News, provides funding to registered charities in areas where Newsquest publishes local newspapers and websites.

The focus is on charities with projects which take a creative approach to fundamental issues such as neighbourhood improvements, local problem-solving, economic development, youth enterprise, sport and healthy living, assistance to disadvantaged or disabled people, care of the elderly, environmental conservation, and educational or cultural enrichment.

Past recipients have included the Marine Theatre in Lyme Regis which received £5,000 towards improving disabled access.

In order to make sure as many groups can be considered as possible a former exclusion of one-off events or events of limited duration no longer applies. And the ban on ‘uniformed groups’ no longer applies either, so Scout groups and similar organisations are free to apply too.

The trustees can't give money to general appeals, salaries or running costs, political or religious organisations, state or privately-run schools (other than special needs) or hospitals (other than hospices) or to organisations that are Community Interest Companies, but not registered charities.

Decisions about funding will be made by the trustees based on the evidence submitted and the Foundation will favour projects that demonstrate good planning, oversight and financial responsibility.

The submission of copies of the charity’s most recent financial accounts are required and any supporting materials and further details concerning the overall aims of the charity should be included with each submission.

Each nomination will be judged on its own merits at the absolute discretion of the trustees whose decision is final, and all applications must be submitted on the approved application form.

Any applications which do not meet our criteria or which do not follow our rules and procedures will be rejected.

The completed form and supporting document should be sent electronically via email to newsdesk@dorsetecho.co.uk and we will not accept applications that are not made using this form. Send it by no later than 12 noon on Friday, October 18.

The trustees will meet to make the awards at the end of November 2019.